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  1. #1
    Sr. Information Officer NJFFSA16's Avatar
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    Post State Farm gives notice: Make homes defensible!

    DENVER (AP) - State Farm is giving 21,000 homeowners in high
    risk wildfire zones in Western states two years to make their homes
    defensible or risk losing insurance coverage.
    State Farm, the nation's largest home insurer, will provide
    advice to homeowners in Colorado, Utah, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada
    and Wyoming on how to make their homes safer, said Steve Niccolai,
    the insurance company's commercial underwriting supervisor.
    Homes in the very highest-risk areas will be inspected and
    owners of homes that need work done will be advised by letter.
    Company officials will work with customers to avoid the need to
    cancel insurance.
    "The last thing we want to do is lose any customers. We want to
    keep our State Farm customers but we want to teach them that they
    can live where they want to live and make it safer," Niccolai
    said.
    Last year, the Hayman fire southwest of Denver burned 132 homes.
    Niccolai said 62 of those were lost because brush hadn't been
    cleared around them.
    Other insurance companies also are becoming stricter about
    issuing new policies for homes in such areas because of the
    increasing wildfire threat, said Carole Walker, executive director
    of the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association.
    We've been telling people for years that they need to protect
    themselves," she said.
    Foresters have long pressed insurance companies to require
    homeowners to clear brush and trees near homes and use
    fire-resistant building materials, especially on roofs.
    In the past, insurance companies didn't have enough information
    to identify areas with the highest risk but state foresters now
    provide detailed maps, Niccolai said. Illinois-based State Farm can
    compare the risk maps with its own data on where its customers
    live.
    ---
    On the Net:
    State Farm: http://www.statefarm.com
    Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association:
    http://www.rmiia.org/Site-Map.htm

    (Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
    Proudly serving as the IACOJ Minister of Information & Propoganda!
    Be Safe! Lookouts-Awareness-Communications-Escape Routes-Safety Zones

    *Gathering Crust Since 1968*
    On the web at www.section2wildfire.com


  2. #2
    Sr. Information Officer NJFFSA16's Avatar
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    PRESCOTT, Ariz. (AP) - Forest residents who don't reduce
    wildfire danger by clearing the brush around their homes risk
    losing their homeowners insurance.
    State Farm insurance, Arizona's largest homeowner provider,
    plans to check every policyholder's home to ensure there is
    sufficient defensible space.
    Customers who don't comply with State Farm's recommendations
    face non-renewal of their policies, which could lead to higher
    policy costs when they seek coverage elsewhere.
    Local fire officials support the insurance company's actions.
    "It's been a way of saving homes by reducing fuels," said Al
    Bates, who chairs the Prescott Area Wildland/Urban Interface
    Commission. "We've been preaching that for 15 years."
    State Farm hopes to start the inspections by July and focus on
    homes that are most prone to wildfires such as the Prescott Basin,
    said spokesman Jim Kriznauski.
    Officials plan to give homeowners up to two years to satisfy the
    requirement.

    (Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
    Proudly serving as the IACOJ Minister of Information & Propoganda!
    Be Safe! Lookouts-Awareness-Communications-Escape Routes-Safety Zones

    *Gathering Crust Since 1968*
    On the web at www.section2wildfire.com

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